• Call Us At (210) 858-1101
  • Join us on Facebook!
  • Schedule Online Today!
Women's Center at Westover Hills
  • Join us on Facebook!
  • Schedule Online Today!
Call To Make An Appointment
(210) 858-1101


Signs, Symptoms and Tips

Menopause the point in which a woman’s menstrual periods stop. Women are considered menopausal only after they have been without a period for a minimum of 12 consecutive months. The average age for menopause is 51 but may occur in the late 40s or late 50s.

Peri-menopause the time leading up to menopause when the levels of estrogen and progesterone begin to change. Pregnancy can still occur during perimenopause but will not occur during menopause.

Common symptoms during peri-menopause and menopause
  • Irregular periods
  • Hot flashes
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Night sweats
  • Increase in vaginal dryness
  • Vaginal thinning
  • Increased urinary tract infections
  • Mood changes
  • Changing feelings about sex including: less desire or more comfortable with your sexuality
  • Forgetfulness
  • Loss of muscle
  • Gaining fat especially abdominal fat
  • Feeling stiff or achy

Treatment is not necessary for symptoms of menopause unless they are affecting your quality of life. Some ways to deal with these symptoms include:

Hot flashes
  • Avoid triggers: alcohol, spicy food, caffeine, stress, hot places or hot showers/baths
  • Dress in layers
  • Use a fan in your home or work place
  • If you are still getting periods ask your provider about low dose birth control pills which may reduce symptoms
  • Some women may be candidates for hormone replacement therapy
  • Other medications that may help with symptoms include antidepressants
Vaginal dryness
  • Use an over the counter lubricant like K-Y for intercourse
  • Over the counter vaginal moisturizer like Replens may provide relief
  • Some women may be a candidate for a vaginal estrogen cream
Problems Sleeping
  • Exercise
  • Avoid large meals, smoking or work right before bed
  • Avoid caffeine after noon
  • Avoid napping
  • Try to go to bed and wake on a schedule
  • Treating hot flashes/night sweats may help with sleep
  • If you can’t sleep get up out of bed and sleep until you are tired.
Mood swings
  • Exercise
  • Try to get enough sleep
  • Learn methods of dealing with stress
Memory problems
  • Exercise
  • Try to get enough sleep
  • See your doctor if forgetfulness is affecting your daily life
Urinary Incontinence

See your provider about treatments, including medication, behavioral changes, devices and surgery.

Hormone Replacement Therapy

Hormone replacement therapy can be very effective in relieving menopausal symptoms but they are not without risk. The longer these medications are taken the higher the risks.

These medications help symptoms by:
  • Reducing hot flashes
  • Reducing night sweats which leads to poor sleep and irritability
  • Reduces vaginal dryness and discomfort
  • Slows bone loss (but is not used to treat osteoporosis)
  • Eases mood swings and mild depressive mood (but should not be used as an antidepressant)
Hormone replacement therapy may increase your risk of:
  • Blood clots
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Breast cancer
  • Gall bladder disease
If you are taking Hormone replacement therapy call your provider if you develop any of the following symptoms:
  • Vaginal bleeding
  • Bloating
  • Breast tenderness or swelling
  • Headaches
  • Mood changes
  • Nausea
Women who have the following are NOT candidates for hormone therapy:
  • Think they are pregnant
  • Undiagnosed vaginal bleeding
  • History of certain cancers
  • History of blood clots
  • History of liver disease
  • History of heart disease
  • History of a stroke or heart attack

As with all medications, you should discuss the risks and benefits of hormone therapy based on your personal history and risk factors with your provider.

Bone Loss

Lower estrogen during menopause can lead to bone loss in women, leading to osteoporosis. Ways to protect your bones and lower your risk of bone loss include:

  • Eating a diet rich in calcium and vitamin D
  • Stop smoking
  • Weight bearing exercises such as: walking, stair climbing, or weight training

Heart Disease

Menopause increases your risk of heart disease which include strokes and heart attacks. Be sure to have annual screenings for high blood pressure and high cholesterol. The following lifestyle changes can help prevent heart disease:

  • Stop smoking
  • Avoid second hand smoke
  • Exercise
  • Follow a healthy diet


Exercise benefits all areas of your life including mood, sleep, heart health and menopause. Set a goal for of 30 minutes of exercise 5 days a week. Exercise should include aerobic and weight training exercises. If you are not able to exercise as mentioned above talk to your provider to help you decide what exercise is right for you.

If you have any questions about menopause, symptoms of menopause, or treatment of menopause please call and make an appointment for a consult with your provider: (210) 858-1101.

From Our Patients
“Dr. Akonye & staff always made me feel more than just a patient. Took care of us through 4 though pregnancies.
May God bless them always.” – Claudia Roque Gutierrez